Archive | December 2011

Constantly in the Darkness: James Blake – A Case of You (Music Video)

James Blake – A Case of You (2011).

British actress Rebecca Hall smiles and cries her way through an entire relationship’s worth of bedrooms in the music video for Blake’s brilliant cover of the Joni Mitchell break-up ballad. One of the best, most evocative videos of the year.

Terry Riley- A Rainbow in Curved Air (1969)

Here’s some more classic electronica. Experimental minimalist composer Terry Riley uses a soprano saxophone and electric organ in ways never conceived of before the release of this album. Using a dual track analog tape machine, Riley plays with phasing, time effects and overdubbing to give the sense of fifteen different saxophonists playing in your living room to an impossibly complex score. “A Rainbow in Curved Air” is one of the first records to use tape loops – which is literally a strip of recording tape taped to itself to create a loop that runs through the machine.

Check out the B-side here.

Wendy Carlos- Switched-On Bach (1968)

Here’s one from the archives. The Moog analog synthesizer was designed in the early 1950’s and was one of the earliest synthesizers used (a vast improvement from the theremin). One of the first made Moogs was given to Wendy Carlos as a gift, one which he ambitiously used  to cover some of Bach’s more well-known masterpieces. The tedious construction of the first-ever fully electronic album took over two years to complete (the Moog was notorious for going out of tune very quickly and wasn’t quite as ‘user-friendly’ as modern synthesizers). The release was a remarkable, influential hit. It made the Moog famous, leading to the emergence of more electronic based musicians, such as Kraftwerk and Tangerine Dream. Amazingly, this album remains the number one bestselling Classical Album to date.

Enjoy these beautiful analog synths here.